Skip to Main Content

Prepare for new academic year guide

Get ready for the new academic year with our preparation guide.

About backup

Moodle modules can be backed up by any enrolled Lecturer or category-level Programme Administrator on a module. The backup file (mbz, a compressed archive of a module) can be stored either within Moodle or outside - on OneDrive, City network space or encrypted USB memory stick.

Moodle backup files do not include:

  • Student and staff enrolment
  • Group membership. (Group names are included)
  • Contributions to collaborative activities (Wiki, Forum, Glossary, Database, etc.) made by any module participant, including the lecturer.
  • Grade history.

Why do I need to backup a Moodle module?

  • To create an archive version of a module before you implement changes, in case you may any mistakes and need to restore the original.
  • To create an archive version of a complicated activity set up before you implement changes.
  • To create an archive version of a module managed by a large number of lecturers to have a backup in case of accidental deletion of content.

Remember, no user data is included in your backup, so we recommend creating a backup once the module has been completed, but before teaching starts.

IT carry out 'system' backups of the entire Moodle site. These are carried out predominantly to provide for disaster recovery (DR) in the event of complete loss or corruption of Moodle. In exceptional circumstances they are used to recover accidentally deleted modules or module content. However, since this entails rebuilding an entire replica Moodle infrastructure and takes a person day to carry out, such requests are approved only in exceptional circumstances. Such requests are normally only approved where student data has been lost and cannot be recovered through any other means.

Moodle backups, for the purposes of insuring against unwanted deletion or alteration of content, are best carried out by staff in schools with appropriate access to Moodle. This includes course officers, programme administrators and, of course, lecturers themselves. Modules can be backed up individually and stored inside Moodle or downloaded for storage outside Moodle (on university approved storage solutions).

Moodle does have an in-built automated module backup tool but with such a large number of modules and size of content these backups were turned off more than 5 years ago.

Step-by-step instructions on taking a module backup are available from the LearnMoodle screencast below.

Please note, in City’s Moodle:

  1. Select More menu on the contextual navigation bar. 
  2. Select Module reuse.

    Module reuse menu under More

  3. Select Backup from the drop-down menu on the top left of the page that opens.

Screencast: Module backup

Creative Commons Licence
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License